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A Contest Model of a Professional Sports League with Two-Sided Markets

Helmut Dietl, Tobias Duschl (), Egon Franck and Markus Lang
Additional contact information
Tobias Duschl: Institute for Strategy and Business Economics, University of Zurich

No 912, Working Papers from International Association of Sports Economists, North American Association of Sports Economists

Abstract: This paper develops a model of a professional sports league with network externalities by integrating the theory of two-sided markets into a contest model. In professional team sports, leagues function as a platform that enables sponsors to interact with fans. In these league-mediated interactions, positive network effects operate from the fan market to the sponsor market, while negative network effects operate from the sponsor market to the fan market. Clubs react to these network effects by charging higher (lower) prices to sponsors (fans). Our analysis shows that the size of these network effects determines the level of competitive balance within the league. Traditional models, which do not take network externalities into account, under- or overestimate the actual level of competitive balance, which may lead to wrong policy decisions. Moreover, we show that clubs benefit from stronger combined network effects through higher profits. Finally, we derive policy recommendations for improving competitive balance by taking advantage of network externalities.

Keywords: Competitive balance; contest; multisided market; network externalities; team sports league (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L11 L13 L83 M21 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 29 pages
Date: 2009-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-com, nep-net and nep-spo
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1)

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Related works:
Journal Article: A Contest Model of a Professional Sports League with Two-Sided Markets (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: A Contest Model of a Professional Sports League with Two-Sided Markets (2010) Downloads
Working Paper: A Contest Model of a Professional Sports League with Two-Sided Markets (2010) Downloads
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